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Thread: Need Suggestion/Canon or Leica R for Alaska ?

  1. #1
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    Need Suggestion/Canon or Leica R for Alaska ?

    Dear ALL,

    I am posting this thread here seeking your suggestion.

    I am going to Alaska for a month from August-Sept. I do have both Canon (800/5.6 IS, and other Canon lenses, Canon latest Body)
    and also Leica DMR+R9 and Leica Modul system 400/2.8, may get 1.4X or 2X Modul making my system 800/5.6 and do have other R lenses too.

    I am in dilema whether to bring the Leica or Canon system with me thinking that Leica would be better in terms of sharpness and color saturation but Canon is AF, faster motor, IS. Also the charge on Battery for DMR does not last long.

    Would be great to hear your experience and thought.

    Thanking you all and looking forward to hearing from you.
    __________________

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    Workshop Member glenerrolrd's Avatar
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    Re: Need Suggestion/Canon or Leica R for Alaska ?

    I can appreciate the dilemma as I still have the modular Telyt lenses . After several years I finally gave up on the R9/DMR because of the reliability issues . The batteries were only good for about 100 captures (I had 8 at one point) and the DMR itself required frequent cleaning of all contacts . The other issue with the DMR was the higher ISO performance ..even at 400 it required care to avoid noise in the shadows . As much as I love the image quality at base ISO ..the DMR is too risky . My vote would be the Canon .

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    Re: Need Suggestion/Canon or Leica R for Alaska ?

    Quote Originally Posted by glenerrolrd View Post
    I can appreciate the dilemma as I still have the modular Telyt lenses . After several years I finally gave up on the R9/DMR because of the reliability issues . The batteries were only good for about 100 captures (I had 8 at one point) and the DMR itself required frequent cleaning of all contacts . The other issue with the DMR was the higher ISO performance ..even at 400 it required care to avoid noise in the shadows . As much as I love the image quality at base ISO ..the DMR is too risky . My vote would be the Canon .
    Many thanks for your suggestion Roger.

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    Re: Need Suggestion/Canon or Leica R for Alaska ?

    Quote Originally Posted by glenerrolrd View Post
    I can appreciate the dilemma as I still have the modular Telyt lenses . After several years I finally gave up on the R9/DMR because of the reliability issues . The batteries were only good for about 100 captures (I had 8 at one point) and the DMR itself required frequent cleaning of all contacts . The other issue with the DMR was the higher ISO performance ..even at 400 it required care to avoid noise in the shadows . As much as I love the image quality at base ISO ..the DMR is too risky . My vote would be the Canon .
    My vote would be the R9/DMR, if it has been reliable for you. Once mine were properly coupled (R8/DMR), I never had problems and I had a external battery set up for mine that allowed about 400 exposures. I always kept a couple with me when I traveled. The optical quality and file bit depth at base ISO was worth the lack of high ISO performance.
    John Hellow
    R8 & DMR, 19mm and 28mm Elmarits, 35mm and 50mm Summicron, 100mm Apo-Elmarit, 180mm f/3.4 Apo, 280mm f/4 Apo; M240 with 24mm Elmarit and 35mm Summilux FLE.

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    Re: Need Suggestion/Canon or Leica R for Alaska ?

    If you are going to shoot from a boat, you will definitely appreciate image stabilization. The boats can't go too close to the shore, so 400mm+ will be often needed and tripods do not work there (rocking, engine vibrations).

    If you are going to take the Denali bus, you might have some excellent opportunities when shooting from the bus windows (the animals are not afraid of the bus plus you can get close to grizzly bears and other animals that you would otherwise want to see from a long way off. The buses can get packed and the situation is further complicated when people from both sides of the bus run to windows on one side to get a shot. Tripod is not an option and you will need a lens of a reasonable size.

    I don't have any experience shooting from small planes, but I understand from experienced photographers that image stabilized lenses are very useful there.

    The other thing that may be very useful is good high iso performance. In overcast weather you may find yourself shooting at ISO 1600. Remember to bring some fast wide to shoot northern lights.

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    Subscriber Member weinschela's Avatar
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    Re: Need Suggestion/Canon or Leica R for Alaska ?

    Shooting from Zodiacs absolutely requires image stabilization. Even if the Leica lenses are terrific, you will get better results with IS lenses. Especially longer lenses. Try it standing on a soft couch with a 300 or 400mm lens.

    In the Galapagos last year I debated taking Leica M vs Nikon D800e. I went with Nikon and have zero regrets because of IS. I have to assume your Canon gear would be the better choice, though I am not sure how you are going to handhold 800mm on a boat under any circumstances.
    Alan

    Selection of work: http://weinschela.zenfolio.com

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    Re: Need Suggestion/Canon or Leica R for Alaska ?

    Many thanks you all for sharing your experience and thoughts. I am thinking to bring my Canon Gear (800mm IS, 400/5.6 L or 300/4 IS or 28-300mm IS, 17-40/4 L and 1DX body) and a few Leica R lenses like 28/2.8 ROM, 35-70/4 ROM and 80-200/4 ROM with a good EOS adapter).
    More suggestions/discussions are welcome.

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    Re: Need Suggestion/Canon or Leica R for Alaska ?

    As a Leica and Canon shooter myself I would probably bring the.....
    I don't know.
    Probably the Canon you can be sure you get the shots you want, and the Canon Tele are very good as well.
    With the Leica you could eventually get a slightly more brilliant result, but only if everything goes good (enough light, succesfull manual focus, etc etc)
    In the end I would probably go for the Canon.
    You als have more resolution than the DMR with the Canon for large prints.
    If it was S vs Canon it would be a more difficult decision IMO (but then the S lenses are limited in reach)

    I am still waiting for a 24x36 small "S" Leica, with AF and weathersealing, which takes existing R-lenses and Leica to develop AF lenses with the R-lens optics for this cameras system.

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    Re: Need Suggestion/Canon or Leica R for Alaska ?

    I am still waiting for a 24x36 small "S" Leica, with AF and weathersealing, which takes existing R-lenses and Leica to develop AF lenses with the R-lens optics for this cameras system.
    Yeah, weather sealing is another good point for Alaska. Rain is likely and I got some snow in September, too.

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    Re: Need Suggestion/Canon or Leica R for Alaska ?

    More suggestions/discussions are welcome.
    It is important to plan the trip ahead and book accommodation and transportation well in advance. There are places with excellent chance of seeing wildlife, but I am sure you did your homework already.

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    Re: Need Suggestion/Canon or Leica R for Alaska ?

    Many thanks friends for your thoughts and suggestions.

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